Everyone likes to watch movies on bigger screens or even wants to do business presentations on bigger displays with the help of budget-friendly projectors with clear image quality.
Many people today still opt for high-end television, which will cost them above $1000 or more, but still, they will produce an image size of 80″ inches.
But what if you get the best projector under $300 that not only produces videos/picture size of more than 100″ inches without compromising in quality?
Things To Know In Projectors Under $300
According to our testing and latest research, if you opt for a projector with a price range of below $300, you will not get a higher resolution image quality.
Yes, you will get a bigger picture size of more than 120″ inches, but contrast ratio and brightness cannot be expected at the higher end.
Now let’s talk about some of the benefits and drawbacks of having budget-friendly projection models.
Benefits & Drawbacks
- Budget-Friendly price.
- Some projector models come with premium features.
- You will get a 100″ inches screen size or more.
- Some projections even come with 1080p resolution & Support of 4k resolution.
- Even there are some models good for casual gaming also.
- You will still not get a native 4k resolution.
- Lower contrast ratio.
- It has average inbuilt speakers with low sound quality.
- It will be harder to use the projector in the daytime due to lower lumens power.
1). ViewSonic 3800
|Screen Size||30″ – 300″ inches|
|3d Support||Yes (ready)|
|Keystone Correction||Vertical (+/- 40°) / 1.1x optical zoom|
|Dimensions||4.3 (L) x 11.6 (W) x 8.6 (H) inches|
The Viewsonic business projector is ideal for those who want to take their projection unit anywhere for their working purpose due to its compact and less weight. Let’s talk about resolution, it comes with a native resolution of 1280 x 800, but still, you can play videos or images at the higher resolution of 1920 x 1080 due to its enhanced feature.
The manufacturer claims it has a lumens power of 3800 and produces clear images in daylight conditions. But if you use it in darker conditions with less lighting, the picture quality will be brighter and crisp.
While testing this model, I placed it on a table at a distance of 14 feet, and the screen size was getting around 120″ inches while playing a Fifa 20 connecting PS4 with this device.
Firstly the image was not that bright enough, so my wife suggested placing it close to the screen, around 12 ft, and the size then I was getting 100″ inches, but the quality of the picture was solid.
It has a dynamic contrast ratio of 22,000:1, which will not wash the picture while playing any dark scenes, but still, in this price range, Viewsonic does the justice.
Regarding sound quality, it comes with a 2w internal speaker, which will sound better in business meetings and classrooms.
But don’t rely on it while watching movies or playing games if you expect premium sound quality.
At the back, there are not plenty, but still, there are single HDMI, USB, Video in, Audio, in/out, and monitor ports to help you to connect your favorite device.
The keystone correction allows you to adjust anything on the wall or screen in a vertical correction of +/- 40° degree.
But if you are planning to adjust horizontally, then you have to move the projector to adjust it.
Viewsonic lamp has a power of “15,000 hours,” but that will be in a super eco mode where the brightness level goes down to 75%.
The eco mode is Ideal in darker rooms or outdoor conditions in the evening time. But if you run the unit in normal mode, it will have 5000 hours of lamp life.
This unit has no Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, but you will need a 3.5mm aux cable to connect this model to an external speaker.
- 3600 lumens powerful bulb.
- 15,000 lamp life when running in eco-mode.
- It has a lower input lag of 16ms.
- Compact in size.
- Suitable for that user who still uses VGA as the input source.
- In 150″inches screen size, the image fades away on the screen.
- No Bluetooth and Wi-Fi features.
- Poor audio quality.
2). YABER Y31
|Brightness||9500L Aux (7000 Lumens)|
|Dimension||12 W x 9 D x 4.0 H|
|Keystone||±50° Auto adjustment, both vertical & horizontal|
|Speaker||3 watt Dual With SRS sound|
|Screen Size||50″ 300″ (Recommended 10 feet away from the screen)|
|Resolution||Native 1080p supports 4k content|
Next on our list is Yaber Y31, a durable plastic body white in color that gives a premium finish when held in our hands.
In terms of design, the company has kept it very basic. On the top is a menu option where you can manage the projector setting and manual zoom focus ring to fine-tune the pictures.
At the front, the branding of “Yaber” and just above, there is an IR sensor which helps to control the projector with remote control.
The back has connectivity options such as a 2x HDMI port, 3.5mm jack, single VGA port, an AV port, etc.
First, I was thinking about where is the USB connection port, but then I looked at the right side and found two USB 2.0 connectivity ports.
This model comes with a native resolution of 1080p, but it will also play 4k content due to its reflective chip, which will upscale to 4k but actually, it’s not playing true UHD content.
While testing this unit, I connected a google Chromecast at the back of the HDMI port and played a movie to see actual image quality.
Now with all the budget projectors, this model does provide a clear and crisp image in a completely dark room but fails to provide a clear picture when the lights are on.
Even though its lamp has powerful 9500L power but still in brighter conditions, the image quality was average.
The sound quality of the Y31 is okay, and it has dual 3W dual stereo speakers, which are enough for smaller rooms with few people.
But if you want to enjoy it with an external speaker, connect this device with a Bluetooth connector, or use a 3.5mm jack port that will solve the problem.
I would not recommend this model for gaming due to its low refresh rate of 24-30 HZ, whereas the latest gaming device requires a minimum 120hz refresh rate to play smoothly.
For the setup process, you can either mount it on a ceiling or place it on a flat surface or bookshelf to project images on the wall.
- It has a native resolution of 1080p with Support of 4k content.
- You can adjust the picture or video horizontally and vertically with the auto keystone feature.
- The Yaber does not produce any noise in eco mode due to its upgraded inbuilt cooling system.
- Three-year repair support with lifetime professional support.
- You can use this model in the daytime if you have decent curtains or wait a bit for the sun to go down.
- When running the Yaber in normal mode with full brightness, the fan will make a lot of noise.
- You can use it for casual gaming but not for professional gamers.
- The manufacturer has advertised it as 9500L, but actually, it is LUX, not a lumen power lamp.
3). NEBULA Capsule By Anker
|Lumens Power||100 ANSI|
|Battery Capacity||120 minutes while watching a movie|
|Operating System||Android 7.1|
|Resolution||854×480 Native supports 1080p content|
|HDMI, Micro USB, Wi-Fi & Bluetooth|
The Anker Nebula is the ideal choice for those who want to take their projector with them anywhere, like camping or placing it in your backyard to watch a movie under the star with family & friends.
First, let’s talk about the design of this soda-type model can fit inside your pocket due to its smaller size and cylindrical look, which is easy to hold while placing on a flat surface.
In the front, the lens does not come with any covering, so after every usage, you will have to store it in its included storage bag to protect it from any dust stored on the lens.
The battery of the Anker capsule has a storage capacity of 5,200 mAH which will last for 4 hours while playing any video.
In another way, if you decide to use it for music, it will last for at least 25-28 hours, as claimed by Anker.
But if you use the portable projector for more than four hours, what you can do is connect the unit to a power bank with a USB port and increase the watch time.
Due to the price point below $300, you cannot expect too many connection ports, which is why Anker comes with only a single HDMI & USB port.
But the best part I like is that it comes with in-built WIFI and Bluetooth connectivity, which is useful for connecting your mobile device.
You can also add external speakers with the help of Bluetooth to get a premium sound experience where it is placed.
With this model, you will get a basic remote control that does not have a backlit, making it harder to use in darker conditions.
But one thing we notice while using the remote is the trackpad which helps to control the screen adjustments and other menu settings, which we find a user-friendly feature.
The Anker nebula comes with an Android operating system loaded with hundreds of apps like Netflix, Hulu, Disney, Amazon prime, etc.
Now let’s talk about the image, which is average as it comes with a native 720p (854 x 480) resolution with a screen size of 100″ inches.
Fairly speaking, I projected the image at 50″ inches, placing the projector 1.50m away to get a brighter image due to 100 ANSI lumen power.
You can mount this projector on the table with a tripod or ceiling with some tricks.
- Speakers are loud with a feeling of Bass while listening to a song.
- The small size lets you store it inside the pocket.
- The Android comes with multiple streaming applications.
- Long battery life.
- Auto picture correction (vertically).
- Lower contrast and brightness level.
- While viewing the video for more than 5 hours starts getting heated.
- Still, you will need a third-party streaming device to view copyright content on Netflix.
4). YG620 Pro By ARTlii
|Item Dimensions||12.2 x 10.24 x 4.33 inches|
|Keystone||±15° Manual Vertical|
|Projection Size||44 – 250 (5~27 feet)|
|Native Resolution||1920 x 1080 (Supports 4k)|
Here is another amazing projector from Artlii, which offers great features at a budget-friendly price. This unit comes with a native resolution of 1920 x 1080 with Support of 4k content on the screen.
So, when we open the package, the Artlii comes inside a carrying bag with all its accessories and guide inside the zipper case.
This carrying case will help those who like to take their projector for an office meeting or while traveling to a friend’s house.
So, when the Artlii came out from the box, the first impression I got was a standard projector built with a clean design.
On the top, it has a touch fingerprint button where everything is controlled. At the back of the unit, the manufacturer has given its users multiple connectivity options.
Now one thing I want to add is that Artlii also paid attention to the connectivity option, that’s why they have added a MicroSD reader for those who like to view images from it.
Also, you will find two USB ports, 2 HDMI ports, VGA, an AV port, and a 3.5 mm jack to connect any external speaker.
Now one thing which shocked us was manually adjusting the keystone ring situated at the back of the model, not on the top.
You will also get Airplay, Miracast, and Bluetooth connectivity to connect your mobile device to cast the content directly on a bigger screen without a third-party connection.
In terms of screen size, I placed this model at a distance of 11″ feet away, and Artlii produces a 100″ inch image size on the Alr screen.
From brightness level, the lamp has the power of 340 ANSI lumens with a contrast ratio of 8000:1, which will show pretty decent black scenes at this price tag.
Due to the lower brightness level, you cannot use it for everyday viewing like other projection units. The Artlii YG620 requires a darker environment to view clear videos on the wall.
While testing YG620 in full brightness mode, the fan started making noise, and we could easily hear the sound even though we were sitting a few yards away from the viewing area.
It has a keystone correction (vertical) limited to only ±15 manually. It can make it hard to adjust the picture when mounting the YG620 pro on the ceiling.
- Multiple connectivity options.
- 1920 x 1080p native resolution & 4k support.
- It comes with a zipper case.
- It is also compatible with both Android and iOS devices.
- I would say good picture quality at a budget price.
- You will have a hard time aligning images due to poor keystone correction.
- Heavy in size.
- Not made for daytime usage.
5). KODAK Luma 150
|Resolution||Native 720p & Supports 1080p|
|Brightness||60 ANSI lumen|
|Battery Life||2 Hours|
|Weight||Less than 1 pound (7.75 oz)|
|Dimension||3.9 x 3.9 x 0.89|
|Connectivity||USB, HDMI, WIFI, Bluetooth, & micro SD card slot|
|Ideal Screen Size||40 – 50 inches|
Next, we have Luma 150 in our list is a pocket-friendly Pico projector from kodak, which has some good things, and there is something that needs improvements.
This high-definition projection unit has a resolution of 854 x 480 but also supports 1080p content.
In terms of design, the front side of the model comes with a lens and a small speaker, which sounds okay, and on the left are a power button and metal focus ring.
On the right side are heating vents and microSD slots that let you stream your picture on a bigger screen.
At the back side, there is DC-in that lets you power on the projector when connected to the wall adapter and charges the Kodak Luma 150.
Also, a reset button can be used to restore the projection setting to the factory default.
On the top is a control panel with a small, silver-colored ring that is illuminated and lights up when you touch or tap the circle.
As it’s a pico projector, the pictures aren’t bright enough to display at more than 70″ inches.
So you cannot use it in front of a larger group of people but perfect in places like in your home or while camping with your friends.
Its lamp has a brightness of 60ANSI lumens, so not a single light should be used while using Luma 150 to view clear video quality.
The manufacturer claims the highest image size of 120″ inches. But according to my testing at the screen size of 40″ inches, the visuals on the screen were clear.
But as soon I increased the image size by 50″ inches, placing the projector a little bit away from the screen, it started fading in a darker room.
In terms of connectivity, there is an HDMI, USB, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi. You can even connect to Amazon prime or Roku stick to view any movie on the screen.
- Premium design
- Light in weight
- The rechargeable battery lasts for 2 hours when charged 100%.
- You can screen mirror any device like Apple & Android.
- The picture quality gets compromised due to less brightness power.
- The ideal viewing size is less than 50″.
Factors To Consider For Best Projectors Under 300
If you purchase a budget-friendly projector for your business meetings or as a home theater experience for under $300, here are some factors which will help you in the selection process.
In every projector, brightness plays an important role, especially when looking for a low-cost projection system for your business meeting or backyard movie night.
So, generally, at the price of below 300$, you will get models of low to average brightness levels. Also, most projectors cannot be used in the daytime due to less ANSI lumens power.
Many use budget-friendly projectors in small to medium rooms with fewer people in dark rooms to get crisper image quality.
If the projection model has a 2000 – 3000 ANSI powerful lamp, it is suitable for daytime viewing with blinds on the window.
Above 3000 lumens, you can generally use it in almost any environment in your house or office with ambient light in the room.
The contrast ratio generally gives clearer pictures in darker scenes on the screen or wall.
Even the premium projectors have a ratio of above 50,000:1, which gives excellent video or picture quality in dark scenes.
But the models with even below 10000:1 ratio will also produce deeper black and white detail on the screen.
This is also the main factor when selecting a projector for business meetings or at home.
For those who don’t want to add external speakers to their model, they need to have a decent in-built speakers projector to hear clear sound while watching anything on it.
But if you expect a premium sound, you need to connect external speakers with BlueTooth or a 3.5mm jack to get a true cinematic experience.
Every unit, whether it is low-priced or premium, is considered one of the main aspects when selecting the projector.
If you want to mount it permanently, make sure it comes with brackets that help mount it on the ceiling without any problem.
But if you place it on a flat surface or table, the unit should mount on a tripod or table to get the right image quality.
Also, if you use it for traveling purposes, I would suggest you go with Pico projectors which are easy to carry and can be placed anywhere on the surface.
What’s the point of having a projection system when it cannot produce a bigger screen size on the wall or the screen?
Always go with that model, which can at least produce a size of more than 80″ inches to get a real theater-like experience or play games with your friends.
So, if you are going to use it for business meetings or in your living room, then having a size of 80″-100″ inches is an ideal size where few people view the content.
But if you use a bigger space like a church or for a movie night with 50 people or above, then going with a 120″ projector is the best bet.
The throw ratio decides at what distance the projector displays the bigger size on the wall or screen.
Some ultra short throw projector produces 100″ inches image size from just 2-3 feet away but comes with a premium price tag.
And some require a minimum of 10″ feet away from the viewing distance to produce a size of 100″ inches, which are called long throw projectors.
Can I use low-cost projectors for causal gaming?
Yes, you can use them for casual gaming, but still, you will face some lag in between due to their poor refresh rate.
Forgot about professional gaming, which requires a minimum lag time of 8ms and a higher refresh rate to play smooth gaming.
Which projector is ideal in 2022 Under $300 price?
Whichever projector provides a minimum resolution of 1080p and goes up to UHD or 4k viewing. Also, it should have Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity with auto keystone correction.
In my testing, the above projectors currently dominate the market in this price range of $300.
These are perfect for those people who want to use them either for their business meetings or use it as watch movies on a giant surface.
Yes, I agree you have to compromise a little bit on the viewing experience, but still, it will fulfill your need for decent projectors for day-to-day usage in this price range.